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Well, 2018 was a year...and so very much of one. It's difficult to disconnect my personal life from the national and global trainwreck, but I'll do my best. It was still a hard year: bad health news for close friends, bad financial and other news for others, the unexpected ending of a long-term friendship, my mother's increasing dementia, the sudden and abrupt news that I wasn't going to be laid off after all (bear in mind that I had three years to plan and prep for a nice break and down time, which I'm not getting), other sundry things. On the other hand, there was a lot of good stuff, too. Queen of Swords Press grew, I went to a lot of great events and met nice people, I'm ending the year with almost all the same people in my life that I hoped would still be there, I had some interesting new experiences and have been learning a lot, I don't have to go job hunting at the moment and I'm a lot healthier than I was this time last year (Norovirus recovery takes longer than you would think).

Starting with the events and experiences part of things, I was interviewed on North Manchester FM's radio show "Hannah's BookShelf" by the amazing Hannah Kate herself, then appeared a few weeks later on the Cocktail Hour Podcast. I did a reading at the University of Minnesota's Tretter Collection in March for the annual Quatrefoil Library's Women's Reading, went to ClexaCon in Las Vegas as a vendor with my pals from Blind Eye Books and hosted a Queen of Swords Press party at WisCon. I got interviewed at Shelfies by Bill Kieffer,  got interviewed with author Rachel Gold in the St. Cloud Times (best headline ever!), interviewed by Paul Weimer at the Skiffy and Fanty Blog and answered 5 Questions for author Loren Rhodes. As Emily L. Byrne, I did the WLW Blog Hop, and had guest posts up at I Heart Lesfic, Women & Words and on Sacchi Green's blog, Reaching Out. In addition to ClexaCon and WisCon, I did readings and panels at Outwrite in Washington, D.C., DreamHaven Books and Eat My Words Books and WordBrew 6 in Minneapolis. Queen of Swords Press had tables at St. Cloud Pride, the Twin Cities Book Festival, the Minnesota Women's Art Festival, 2 instances of the Books and Beer Pop-up Store, the Queer Author Holiday Fair and probably something I'm forgetting.

Writing and editing
. Queen of Swords Press/me and company put out three books this year: Catherine had 6 stories published this year:
  • “A Winter’s Tale” in A Few More Winter Tales edited by Matthew Bright. December, 2018 (Fantasy).
  • “A Cry in the Night,” forthcoming TBD. World of Darkness: Ghosthunters (final title TBD).
  • “The Letter of Marque” reprinted on Curious Fictions. August, 2018. (Historical)
  • “Faceless” and “Firebird” reprinted in the OutWrite 2018 Journal, Issue 1. August, 2018 (Fantasy).
  • “The Mask and the Amontillado,” Tales of the Unanticipated #32, edited by Eric Heideman, July, 2018. (Horror)
  • “One Night in Saint Martin,” March, 2018. Lesbian Historic Motif Podcast, edited by Heather Rose Jones. (Historical)
  • And had an excerpt from Silver Moon in D.C.'s Metro Weekly

Emily (Other Me) had 4 stories published this year -
I also helped raise money for Rainbow Railroad, The Aliveness Project and SAGE: Advocating for LGBT Seniors, donated book packages to Con or Bust and Sirens, and volunteered for my second year in a row as a member of the Community Review Board at PFund Foundation. Wow! I did more than I thought I had! Plus more fun stuff in progress, of course. Big shoutout to all the venues that hosted me, the Press and colleagues, all the other writers who tabled with or did appearances with me, to my wife Jana for helping out and splitting a table at the MN Women's Festival, to my authors, cover artists, copy editor, book designer, videographer and web guru (not all the same person!), to the folks who interviewed me, bought books, reviewed my work, the folks who boosted the signal and recommended books to others, folks who helped with marketing and to my friends who were there for me this year - thank you all very much!

Now for a brief respite, then on to 2019!

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To which my first thought is, "No, no, no. Let's not relive it." But there were high points and good things and I always do a year in review post, so here we are.

Let's start with the good stuff, shall we?
  • So I decided it was now or never and I started my own small publishing company, a dream I've been noodling on for a couple of years now. Queen of Swords Press has a monthly newsletter (sign up at the website), a functioning website and four titles available on all major ebook platforms and in print. The new edition of my novel  Silver Moon did well at the Rainbow Awards, Out of This World is up for a Lambda Award and both Knife's Edge and Desire are up for Goldie Awards. There have been some nice reviews too! Plans for 2018 books are somewhat in flux right now, but definitely include Murder on the Titania and Other Steam-Powered Tales by Alex Acks.
  • I went to my second international con and got to visit Reykjavik, Helsinki and Stockholm, do fun panels at Worldcon 75, meet lovely people and have a generally interesting time. I also went to WisCon, Sirens and Diversicon, to round out my conventions for the year.
  • Other events that I participated in included: an episode of the Skiffy and Fanty Podcast; two readings at the Quatrefoil Library; a ghost stories reading at Bingley's Teas;  a Books and Beer Popup Store at a local brewery; possibly the last Queer Voices Reading at the Central Library?; two episodes of the Lesbian Historic Motif Podcast; a reading with Rachel Gold at Boneshaker Books; WomenVenture's Women Mean Business Fair and Luncheon; the Twin Cities Book Festival; Lounge Books Virtual Horror Festival; and a talk at DreamHaven Books about starting a small press.
  • I helped raise $1100 in donations for Rainbow Railroad through a StoryBundle I participated in, as well as raising nearly $300 through my Patreon for groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center, the NAACP and Ultraviolet.
  • I wrote a second gaming tie-in story for a World of Darkness game (release date is TBD) and had a travel essay accepted for a women and travel anthology (2018 release). Emily L. Byrne had a good year too, with stories appearing in Witches, Princesses and Women at Arms and Best Lesbian Erotica of the Year Vol. 2. I got "unstuck" on Blood Moon, the sequel to Silver Moon and wrote several new stories or fragments of stories that I hope to get polished up and out soon.
  • I went to a lot of good theater, a couple of good benefits and a lot of interesting events. I also met a bunch of cool people.
And then the nonpolitical portions of the shitshow year:
  • Had several friends and acquaintances die on me. I miss them and my pseudo aunt, who died at the end of last year, an enormous amount.
  • Financial problems of the irritating, but not dire, variety.
  • I had annoying health problems, culminating with a painful torn shoulder tendon followed by contracting norovirus. 2017 has been all about the pain, on multiple levels. Sleeping, also not so great.
  • My mother went into memory care on Friday of Christmas weekend because, hey, why not? 2017 must suck as much as possible. It's a rule. :-(
  • Day job slowly collapsing in stressful ways.
So yeah, definitely a mixed bag. But here's hoping for better things in 2018, especially for those who have been hit hardest under the current regime. Make good art when you can and keep resisting!
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Oh man, 2015. So many ups and downs and sideways things to this year. I wish it was ending on a more positive note overall, but I suppose that would be too much to ask, and thus we arrive at mixed bag as a summation for how this year went. This will be the writing post, life post to follow. So I set out to do some rebuilding and get some work published, which I think went reasonably well.


Published this year (as me):
"A Scandalous Calculation" in
The Mammoth Book of the Adventures of Moriarty
"Bluebeard's Wife" in The Mammoth Book of Jack the Ripper Stories
"Creatures of the Night: A Short History of Queer Horror" in
Queers Destroy Horror (special issue of Nightmare Magazine) (nonfiction).
"Aging in IT" in
Model View Culture (nonfiction)

Published this year as Emily L. Byrne:
"Repossession" in
First: Sensual Stories of New Beginnings, edited by Cheyenne Blue
"Summer Stock" in
Summer Love, edited by Harper Bliss and Caroline Manchoulas
"The Old Spies Club" in
Spy Games, edited by Jillian Boyd
"Wage Slave" in Bossier: More Productive Tales of Lesbian Lust, Ladylit Publishing
"Lovely Rita, Meter Maid" in The Mammoth Book of Uniform Erotica, edited by Barbara Cardy

Forthcoming next year (so far):
"The Cask and the Amontillado" in Tales of the Unanticipated, Vol. 31
"The Further Adventures of Miss Scarlet" in Best Lesbian Erotica of the Year 20th Anniversary Edition, edited by Sacchi Green
"Toads, Diamonds and the Occasional Pearl" in The Princess's Bride, edited by Sacchi Green

Cons and related events in 2015:
Had my first GOH appearance as Editor Guest of Honor at Arcana 45.
Did panels and readings at Marscon, AWP, the Nebula Awards Weekend, CONvergence, Diversicon and Sirens.
Did an author Koffee Klatch and the MinnSpec Local Author Showcase, both with the fine folks at the Minnspec Meetup


Served as a writing award judge
Added to and reformatted my Old(er) Women in SF/F Bibliography –

Part 1 and Part 2

My thoughts on “Tragic Queer Narratives,” “An Appreciation of Suzette Haden Elgin and “Tanith Lee: Where to Start Reading” got some attention.

Queen of Swords Press:
Things learned this year: everything takes more time than I hope/think it will, including this post.

I have an LLC and a spiffy logo so things are becoming official. Trademark app for the name is signed, contracts are getting drafted. Domain is purchased, website is planned, several projects are underway or under consideration and I’m interviewing a new business accountant today. All things which I thought would be done back in September/October. But, hey progress.

Upcoming for 2016, so far:

Joint presentation on “Aging and Accessibility in IT” at the GoogleDev Conference

Two workshops at The Loft Literary Center (if they carry)

A presentation at the U. of MN on older women in science fiction and fantasy (barring unforeseen class cancellations)

Cons: Arisia in Boston, Au Contraire in New Zealand (! NZ is a go, waiting to hear from the con), CONvergence (Mpls), Diversicon (Mpls), Midamerica Con II (Worldcon in Kansas City), Gaylaxicon (Mpls), Arcana (St. Paul) and TeslaCon (Middleton, WI).


Writing year in review overall: not too shabby. It has ended with a slew of rejections and getting very recently jerked around by a convention committee on a guest appearance, though, so that makes it feel more sour than it actually was. Oh well. Onward and upward and all that.  Here’s hoping that 2016 is a terrific writing and editing and related year for us all!



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Time for the usual post, with additions. First the writing part.

I wrote a lot of essays, posts and articles this year. These included:
Amazons and Warrior Women In Fact and Fiction" for the 2014 Lesfic Appreciation Event
LGBT Science Fiction and Fantasy in the 1970s" on SF Signal
LGBT Science Fiction and Fantasy in the 1980s" on SF Signal
LGBT Science Fiction and Fantasy in the 1990s" on SF Signal
LGBT Science Fiction and Fantasy 2000-2010 PART 1" on SF Signal
LGBT Science Fiction and Fantasy 2000-2010 PART 2" on SF Signal
"Mind Meld: Best Book Openings" on SF Signal
Mind Meld: Our Favorite Convention Panels" on SF Signal

I also will have a story ("Arachne")  in the very soon to be released Best Lesbian Erotica 2015, edited by Laura Antoniou.

Writing as Other Me, Emily L. Byrne, I saw "The Adventures of Miss Scarlet" in Forbidden Fruit: Tales of Unwise Lesbian Desire, edited by Cheyenne Blue. Emily also had stories accepted for several forthcoming anthologies: an as yet untitled Alison Tyler anthology, The Princess's Bride: Lesbian Fairytale Erotica edited by Sacchi Green, The Mammoth Book of Uniform Erotica edited by Barbara Cardy and Bossy 2: Productive Tales of Lesbian Desire, also from Ladylit.

Other writing-related accomplishments: I finished 2 drafts of an erotic science fiction novel and embarked on a third, I wrote several new short stories, I got a bit of traction on Blood Moon and I just finished an essay on Irene Adler in films and TV since 2000, which will go out tomorrow. Plus, a lot of work in progress. I've also gotten some traction on indie publishing some of my own books, plus possibly starting up my own press. And I found out that an essay I wrote is required reading for an NYU class, which is building a series of Pinterest boards around it. <g>
So not anywhere near what I planned or hoped for at the beginning of the year, but not nothing, either.

Other stuff. Man, not the best year ever. We've been dealing with my mother's mental and physical deterioration all year and it's been draining and ghastly and unpleasant and stressful, with very rare intervals of calm. I've been sick a lot. Day job completely reorganized and it looked like my job was going to be outsourced, and it may well yet, but probably not for awhile longer. A chunk of my original support network evaporated earlier this year, in part because of people peace outing on me when things got really bad and I became burdensome? unpleasant? inconvenient?  and in part due to WisCon fallout, what between the lying, the victim blaming, the gaslighting and related. And then there was the news, oh so very much news and so much of it horrible.

But on the plus side, I have a wonderful wife and cats, the friends who stuck by me are great people and I've met some new folks and/or just gotten to know some other folks better. I dug us out of a substantial amount of debt and got our finances more stable. I'm working on a business plan. I've done a lot of interesting reading, learned some new software and embarked on several major projects to fix up our house. We went to Boston for Arisia and Wisconsin for TeslaCon, both of which were a blast. We got to visit the International Wolf Center and North American Bear Center, both in Ely, MN. I spent a nice weekend writing and reading in Reed's Landing, MN. Some friends from Iowa are finally going to get move up here, so we'll see them more. So, overall, 2014 - the proverbial mixed bag.

Here's hoping 2015 is a better year all around, particularly for those folks who had the worst of it this year. As for my readers, fans and colleagues, thanks for sticking with me and I wish you all joy, love and success in the coming year!

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In which I will mostly focus on the writing and related, but will note that we also made an epic trip to NYC and back to move my mother into assisted living, which impacted pretty much everything for the second half of the year.

My 2013:
Marscon, WisCon, 4th Street Fantasy (in the sense of being there for one panel and the beginning of the Storm of Doom and accompanying power outage), CONvergence. And then I was one of the Guests of Honor at Diversicon 21. <g>

Related writing events – I was on a panel called "OUTspoken and OUTfront: LGBTQ Writers Moving Beyond Binaries" at the
Southeast Wisconsin Festival of Books in Waukesha, WI.

Author readings:
SubText: A Bookstore, Quatrefoil Library Women Author’s Reading, DreamHaven Books and the 2013 MNSpec Writer’s Showcase (now on YouTube)

Radio/Podcasts :
WBAI Hour of the Wolf Radio Show, Howl Out Podcast

Book club appearances: Portland Lesbian Book Salon, North Country Gaylaxians Book Club, Minneapolis Lesfic Book Club

Guest blogs:
Lesbian Fiction Appreciation Event 2013 on getting writing inspiration from history
SF Signal blog posts on “LGBT SFF Before 1970” and “Monstrous Females and Female Monsters" and "LBGT Themes in Fantasy and SF"
5 questions on author Warren Rochelle’s
5 questions on author Joel Arnold’s
“An In-Person Appearances Primer for Writers” on author Cathy Pegau’s

Writers hosted on my
blog in 2013: Laura Lam,Jacqueline Koyanagi, Susan Jane Bigelow, Warren Rochelle, Joyce Chng/J. Damask, Jill Braden, Rachael Acks,Sunny Moraine

Short fiction finished and status thereof:  2 new stories published – “
The Light Fantastic” in Luna Station Quarterly and “Medium Mechanique” in Ghosts in Gaslight, Monsters in Steam. 1 reprint in Best Lesbian Erotica 2014. And I also wrote 2 other new stories in need of homes and have 3 other stories underway and in various stages of progress.

Novel length fiction work and related: I completed 3 book proposals  and had all three accepted.  I have 85% of one novel draft completed and progress made on the Silver Moon sequel Blood Moon. Notice I’m not tossing out a timeline for the next book(s); this is because of reasons and I’ll do an update as soon as I can.

Awards: none won, alas, but Silver Moon was a finalist for the
Bisexual Book Awards in the SF/F Category and for the Goldie Awards in the Speculative Fiction Category

Books Out of Print:
Crave: Tales of Lust, Love and Longing
. One of my two award-winning lesbian erotica collections.
Things learned:
·        How to write a book synopsis/outline
·        How to write a book proposal
·        How to outline stories that don’t exist yet
·        Have I mentioned outlining? It’s a new thing and it seems to be working for me. I’ve been a pantser since I started writing and this is a big transition for me. Next up, we see if we like the final results lots and lots.
·        How to be a guest at a con. Okay, I pretty much knew that before, but it was my first time headlining and Jack McDevitt and Roy Booth were great and very helpful, as was the Diversicon 21 con com.

All in all, it's been one hell of a year. Lots of big highs and big lows. Many, many thanks to everyone who hosted me, bought my books, came to my readings and panels, bought stories from me and listened to me kvetch. You are all awesome! Here's wishing a wonderful 2014 for us all!

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It's been a very, very full year. :-)
As part of or related to the launch of my first novel,
Silver Moon, I did the following:
  • I did readings and panels at 7 science fiction conventions - Marscon, WisCon, 4th Street Fantasy, CONvergence, Diversicon, Worldcon and Gaylaxicon.
  • I moderated and participated a panel on lesbian shapeshifters at the Golden Crown Literary Convention.
  • I did 5 bookstore/event readings - DreamHaven Books, Comics and Art; Quatrefoil Library; Women and Children First Bookstore; Outwords Books and Cafe; Magers & Quinn Booksellers
  • I was a featured author at the Raintaxi Twin Cities Book Festival.
  • I was a writer guest on KFAI's Write on! Radio show.
  • I wrote the following guest blogs:
  1. "Do's and Don'ts of Author Self-Promotion" - on Morgen Bailey's writing blog.
  2. Lesbian Fiction Appreciation Event I did a guest post on host author K.T. Grant's blog on lesbian protagonists in science fiction and fantasy.
  3. Whatever: The Big Idea: Silver Moon
  4. "Writing Silver Moon and Menopausal Werewolves" at the Skiffy and Fanty Show Blog
  5. Good Lesbian Books - post on my favorite "starter" books with lesbian protagonists/themes.
  6. "Adventures in Marketing: Promoting My First Novel" on author and editor Deborah J. Ross' blog.
  7. "The Highs and Lows of Promoting Lesbian Fiction" on The Scarlet Letter ezine.
  8. "Genre and Border Crossings" at Lisabet Sarai's Beyond Romance
  9. SF Signal Mind Meld - "Directions that SF Hasn't Taken" (with Kelly McCullough, David J. Schwartz, Michael D. Thomas/Damien Taylor and Ayleen the Peacemaker)
  10. "Depictions of Aging in SF/F" - Clarion Foundation's Writer's Craft blog
  • I did the following interviews
  1. Menopause and The Single Werewolf: Ten Questions with Catherine Lundoff, author of Silver Moon on author Tracy S. Morris' blog.
  2. Author Gavin Atlas interviewed me at Out in Print on my recent work.
  3. Werewolf blogger extraordinaire David Jon Fuller interviewed me about Silver Moon at his blog, As You Were: Metal, Monsters, Mayhem.
  4. Author Roxanne Bland interviewed me at Of Werewolves and Other Strangers
  5. Tom Muzyka interviewed me for Outlook Columbus
  • I was a guest on the following podcasts:
  1. Skiffy and Fanty Show - "Influences on Modern Fantasy"
  2. Reading from Silver Moon, Broad Universe Broadpod Podcast for Pride Month.
  3. Alternate History - Broad Universe Broadpod Podcast, includes a reading from my collection A Day at the Inn, A Night at the Palace and Other Stories.
  4. Readings Goes to the Wolves - multi-author interview and reading on lesbian werewolves, includes a short reading from Silver Moon
  5. "Exploring Beyond the Borders: Breaking the Conventions of Genre in SF/F/H." Broadly Speaking Podcast with Larissa Niec, Julia Rios and Kris McDermott.
  6. Episode 49 of the Cocktail Hour - "Catherine Lundoff and Silver Moon"
Not surprisingly, I wrote very little new short fiction (3 new stories). I saw reprints of my stories "Diplomacy" (in a new edition of Periphery: Erotic Lesbian SF from Untreed Reads) and "At the Roots of the World Tree" (in Sky-Tinted Waters: A Minnspec Anthology from Sam's Dot Press). Hellebore and Rue: Tales of Queer Women and Magic was a finalist for a Goldie Award and was released in an ebook edition from Lethe Press. And I did make some headway on a new erotic science fiction novel and on Blood Moon, Silver Moon's sequel.

Writer "bucket" list items achieved in 2012: saw my first novel published, saw it get a positive review in Publisher's Weekly, received an invitation to be a Special Guest at a 2013 con (
Diversicon 21) and was a featured author at the TC Books Festival. While 2012 has had its ups and downs, overall, it's been an amazing year. Many, many thanks to everyone who encouraged and supported and hosted me this year! Your help and kind words (and book purchases) have made all the difference. I look forward to working with many of you in 2013 and years to come.

No real resolutions for next year yet, except to write more words, meet more readers and embrace new challenges. :-)

Here's wishing everyone a lovely New Year's and terrific 2013!


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